Creating sounds themes for Ubuntu 9.10 and 10.04
I recently installed Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx and was impressed with the work done by its developers. But the default system sounds were still the same and I didn't like them. So, I started searching for a way to change these sounds and make my own sound theme.
It turns out that it was very easy to do this in versions of Ubuntu prior to 9.10. There, you just had to go to
System>Preferences>Sounds and change the sounds associated with each event manually. But, those options are not there in the Sound Preferences window anymore. Now, I know that someone is going to make a new tool soon to change these sounds, but till then, you can follow the steps below to make your own custom Ubuntu sound theme.
Step 1: Open the folder
/usr/share/sounds as root. To do this, you can press Alt+F2, and type gksudo nautilus in the run window. Enter your password, and browse to the folder.
Step 2: Create a new folder and name it as the name you want to call your theme. For now, I'll call it
Step 3: Inside this folder, create a new file and call it
index.theme. Then, open it using your favorite text editor and enter the following in the file:
[Sound Theme] Name=mytheme Directories=stereo [stereo] OutputProfile=stereo
In this, replace
mytheme with your theme name.
Step 4: Create a directory called
stereo inside your theme directory. This is the directory which will contain all the sound files for your new theme.
Step 5: This is when you actually select which sounds you want to keep for which events. Some common events and their sound's filenames required are given below. For a complete list (as complete as I could find), goto Sound Naming Specifications.
dialog-error battery-low Notifications: message-new-instant message-new-email phone-incoming-call system-bootup system-ready system-shutdown desktop-login desktop-logout service-login service-logout battery-caution dialog-warning dialog-information dialog-question
phone-outgoing-calling message-sent-instant message-sent-email bell trash-empty item-deleted file-trash
window-close window-slide dialog-ok dialog-cancel button-pressed button-released menu-click button-toggle-on button-toggle-off item-selected
Step 4: After you have selected some of these sound files, you have to convert it to
.wav format (these are the formats that I was able to test successfully, but the default Ubuntu sounds are in
.ogg, so, you may want to convert to that). To convert to
.oga formats, you can use a software called
Sound Converter, available through the software center or the package manager. Or you can just click here to install it.
Step 5: Now, just put these files in the stereo directory you created above.
Step 6: This is the easiest step. Goto
Syetem > Preferences > Sound. In the drop-down menu, you should be able to see the name of the new theme you created. Select that, close and reboot.